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Softball Sweeps Buena Vista in Doubleheader
By: Ashley Hofer, Sports Information Student
ROSEMOUNT, Minn. (UWEClugolds.com) - The UW-Eau Claire softball team wrapped up opening weekend by scoring six runs in each of today's games to sweep Buena Vista University (Iowa) in a doubleheader at the Irish Sports Dome.
The Blugolds were dominant in the first game against Buena Vista. The Blugolds scored pairs of runs in the first, second and fifth innings. Sara Baumgartner (Sr.-Arcadia, Wis.) and Jess Freagon (Jr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) picked up RBIs in the first while Aleisha Harper (Jr.-Mondovi, Wis./Eau Claire North) batted a single to left field to score two in the second. Nikki Bromelkamp (Jr.-Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa) also added a pair of RBIs in the fifth with a single. Eau Claire prevented the Beavers from scoring until the bottom of the seventh, and quickly wrapped up the remainder of the inning to capture the victory.
Ashley Meinen (Jr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) earned the win after pitching four innings and striking out three batters. Lauren Carlson (Fr.-Eagan, Minn.) recorded the save for pitching three innings. Harper, Emily Muller (Jr.-Lancaster, Wis.) and Bromelkamp all had strong days at the plate, going two-of-four with multiple RBIs or runs.
The second game against the Beavers was a much closer competition. Eau Claire dashed out to a quick 4-0 lead in the first two innings, thanks in part to Harper’s lead-off home run in the first, but gave up five runs to Buena Vista in the second portion of the game.
With a 4-3 lead in the sixth, Samantha Weix (So.-Elk Mound, Wis.) drove in her first run of the year via a single to left field that scored Emily Haluska (So.-Stevens Point, Wis./SPASH). But Eau Claire’s two-run lead vanished in the seventh, as the Beavers capitalized on three hits and an error to score two runs. With the game tied in the bottom of the eighth, Haluska singled to centerfield to score Bromelkamp and win the game 6-5.
Jess Hegseth (So.-Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa ) picked up her first win of the season. Hegseth played just over five innings and struck out five batters. Bromelkamp and Haluska both nailed two hits at four at bats, scoring two runs.
On Saturday, the Blugolds also played two games against University of St. Thomas (Minn.). The Blugolds dropped the first 2-0 after only recording just two hits all game. Eau Claire made up for the lack of offense in the second game, scoring 12 runs in the first three innings for the 12-8 win. After the games this weekend, the Blugolds are off to a solid 3-1 start for the season.
The Blugolds will be off until spring break, when the team hits the road for the Tucson Invitational in Tucson, Ariz. Eau Claire will play 10 games between March 20 and 25, beginning with a game against St. Catherine University (Minn.).